Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Bid to reconcile Afghan rivals

French President Francois Hollande with Pakistan leader Asif Ali Zardari (AP)
French Republican Guards at a meeting between the leaders of Pakistan and France (AP)

France's president has said his country is trying to ease tensions in Afghanistan by talking to conflicting parties and sees Pakistan as key to stabilising the region.

President Francois Hollande, who has met Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari, said they talked about Afghanistan and the risks it faces when international military forces leave.

Mr Hollande said they discussed their nations' roles in promoting stability in the region.

He said France was "talking to everyone" in an effort to ease tensions and promote peace.

France is hosting a rare face-to-face gathering of Afghanistan's major players, including the Taliban, next week.

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